Women in leadership: lifting up female peers in a male-dominated industry  

Women in mining, energy and resources, and construction – not to mention women in leadership roles within these industries – come up against biases in their day to day lives.  

Last year in Australia there was an estimated 19.2% of women in FIFO or DIFO roles. Of the women engaged in this industry, only a small percentage were in supervisory roles.  

MACFORCE’s General Manager, Tyla MacShane, knows first-hand what it is like to work, live and thrive in a male-dominated industry. Starting her career just a short five years ago, Tyla has challenged and overcome a series of biases associated with her age and gender.  

Her learning? That now, more than ever, it is time to lift our female peers and support them in joining industries that have historically been ‘off limits’ to women.  

“A huge push for me in this industry has been watching the success of other powerful and inspiring women,” Tyla said.  

“Women in leadership and industry has seen so much growth in the last few decades. And while there is still a way to go, it is incredible to see us all come together to show how powerful we can be.”  

As a company, MACFORCE promotes equality for everyone in the workforce through equitable access to resources, training, and employment opportunities. 

Over the past six months, Tyla has taken on more responsibility which includes being a part of “bigger conversations” and strategic visions for MACFORCE. A critical point being the greater push for the inclusion of women. On-site currently, 45.5% of the MACFORCE’s mobilised workforce is represented by women.   

Championing the work of women and minority groups in the industry as a woman in leadership, Tyla has four pieces of advice for women to make the most of their success in this space.  

Tyla MacShane, General Manager at MACFORCE Australia embraces a bold and progressive frontier representing a growing number of women in senior leadership in the country.

#1 Stop comparisons 

Something that is detrimental to any individual’s growth – regardless of gender – is comparing yourself to others. No two people are the same so, similarly, no two people’s employment or professional development journey is the same.  

Things will happen at various times of your career, so it is important that you focus on yourself and what you need to achieve your definition of success.  

#2 Claim your space  

When success comes to you, you can slip into a mindset that tells you did not earn it or it was a fluke, but in fact your commitment, skills and talent got you there. In times like this, you must push back intrusive negative thoughts to claim your space and recognition that your achievements have earnt you.  

“The biggest barrier I overcame in my role has been imposter syndrome. It stopped me from owning my work, speaking up and taking charge of a situation,” Tyla said.  

“My biggest advice to overcome this would be to talk about it. Once I opened up, I was surprised to find that a lot of people have had the same feeling.”  

#3 Grow your network 

Making positive changes to your mindset is nothing without a support system of like-minded individuals to talk to about your growth and challenges. This group may be made up of peers, women in leadership roles, or people you consider role models.  

Having a ‘sounding board’ and safe space to unburden yourself helps you to identify areas you are doing well in, pressure points and even places where you need a little more support.  

#4 Reflect on growth 

When you have your head down trying to progress it is easy to forget to take a beat to reflect. In everything you do, ensure that you give yourself the time to congratulate yourself, take stock and readjust your goals.  

“It is so important to take the time to recognise and shed a light on things that we have achieved in our different stages of growth,” Tyla said.  

If you are looking to kick-start your career in the FIFO industry, connect with us via recruitment@macforce.com.au

ABOUT MACFORCE: 

MACFORCE Australia is a recruitment company with heart, focused on changing the way people are employed in Australia, particularly across the mining, construction, and civil sector. MACFORCE supports candidates to find suitable work placements, while supporting its clients to find suitable employees. 

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